SEOUL, Feb. 19 (Korea Bizwire) — Visually impaired high school students graduating from Seoul’s Hanbit School for the Blind this year received ‘graduation albums’ that they can touch and feel.
Eight statues created with a 3D printer were presented to eight high school seniors on Monday before the graduation takes place on February 22.
The statues were designed by Lim Jin-hwan, Sahmyook University student who is also a designer at a 3D printing startup.
Each statue is 17 centimeters tall, depicting the faces, hairstyle, and other lively features of the graduates. At the bottom of each of the statues the names of the students are engraved.
“I was never able to see my friends’ faces at school. Now, I can feel them with my hands and graduate with a happy heart,” said Yang Ji-woo, one of the graduates.
Lim, whose dream is to become a designer of prosthetics, first got into contact with the Hanbit School after watching a YouTube video on designing statues for the blind.
After convincing his employer, he sent out proposals to six local schools for the blind, and received a response from the Hanbit School.
Lim visited the school to scan the faces of each graduates, and build statues using a 3D printer at his workplace.
Fifteen volunteers from Byeolnae High School in Namyangju, Gyeonggi Province also helped scan and process the statues.
“It wasn’t easy at first. Some students with multiple disabilities struggle just to sit for the scanning, and some disliked getting photographed,” said Lim.
“After I realized that it was more about engaging with them, rather than using my techniques, students came to me first. It was a touching moment.”
“I hope to contribute to building a world where technology can help disabled persons enjoy a comfortable life,” he added.
Ashley Song (firstname.lastname@example.org)